Japan Tour 2023

Some adventures below from the Japan Tour.

Day 9: Students began their journey to Tokyo, where in Odaiba, they gazed upon the 20 metre tall Gundam statue and got in some last minute shopping. A few brave adventurers even made it to 'Tokyo beach' and put their feet in the water to cool down in the Autumn heat! At the Team Lab Planets Art Museum, they immersed themselves in the array of colourful artworks. Tokyo wa nigiyaka desune! (Tokyo is lively, isn't it!)

Day 10: Our keen but somewhat weary adventurers loved being able to reconnect with their childhood at Tokyo Disneyland! The excitement was palpable as they entered the gates and stood in awe of the magical Cinderella Castle. Mickey and Minnie ears adorned many heads and as always, the Disney plushies were a big hit! The night time parades were spectacular, with beautiful lights illuminating the sky.  Mickey wa kakkoii desu! (Mickey is cool!)

Day 11: Our adventurers had cake to celebrate Ruby Hasted's (early) 14th birthday and travelled to Honjo Higashi High School, the College's sister school. Students received their first taste of Japanese school life, swapping their shoes for slippers. During the Matching Ceremony, students were filled with anticipation when meeting their host family.

It was entertaining to hear the gasp of the Japanese girls when our tall, blonde Ben stood to meet his family. We are sure that all students will greatly benefit from this amazing opportunity and look forward to learning of their incredible experiences!

Our intrepid travellers are savouring every moment of their wonderful adventures in Japan. From visits to historical sites, encounters with beautiful wildlife, breath taking views and immersive cultural experiences, this trip is truly one for the books!Please enjoy a few snaps of our students and staff exploring the incredible cities of Kyoto and Nara, including their visit to the beautiful island Miyajima.

Our A.B. Japan Tour Legends didn't let a relentless downpour dampen their spirits! They tackled the day with a quick buffet breakfast and adjusted their plans due to the weather. First stop: Himeji Castle via bullet train - "Himeji Castle is a samurai dude's old home," says Mrs. Walduck. They climbed, enjoyed the breeze, and admired the view like samurais! Next, some weaponry practice in the arcade! 

They wrapped up with a peaceful dinner at Hiroshima Station restaurants, then headed back to the hostel. What a day! P.S. Japan Tour FAQ: "Where's the bin?" (Gomibako wa doko desuka?) Response: "We're in Japan, good luck!" Despite the challenge, Japan stays impeccably clean!

Our group of adventurers is set to enjoy an immersive day with their welcoming host families and adorable pets!

They are buzzing with excitement about the diverse experiences waiting for them:

  • Dressing in elegant kimonos to explore the myriad of shops!
  • Discovering the charming cat cafes scattered around!
  • Soaking in the vibrant sights and sounds of Tokyo!
  • Experiencing the magical allure of Disney Sea!
  • Witnessing the bustling energy at Shibuya, the world’s busiest crossing!
  • And, of course, cherishing simple, joyful moments of hanging out and bonding!

The Japan Tour Legends thoroughly enjoyed having a home-cooked meal from their wonderful homestay families. The chance to stop and slow down was a welcome change to the students' busy sightseeing schedule! The Japan Tour Staff were graciously treated to an incredible tour of Hojo Higashi High School, where we met Principal Kobayashi, viewed the school's fantastic facilities and saw precious momentos from A.B., including photos and commemorative plaques. It was incredible to see the Memorandum of Understanding between Honjo and A.B., signed by our previous principal, Mrs Dawn Lang, signifying the commencement of the sister school relationship in 2000.

Students and teachers were treated as guests of honour during the Welcome Assembly and took great delight in the incredible performances from the Koto Club (Japanese harp), Chorus Club (Choir)and Calligraphy Club. Students graciously took part in a traditional tea ceremony and had the opportunity to serve their host brothers and sisters as well. With some trepidation and excitement, students attended classes throughout the day, finding the level of Japanese vocabulary used to be quite a challenge!

Honjo Higashi wa subarashi katta desu! Honjo Higashi was wonderful!

On behalf of A.B. Paterson College, we extend our deepest gratitude to Mark Itoh, the host families, and the staff of Honjo Higashi High School for their exceptional care of our students.

Thank you for warmly welcoming our students, for the unforgettable trips, and for sharing the beauty of city and cultural sites. The amazing photos in our group chat have garnered admiration back home. Our students have cherished these unique experiences, a testament to your generosity and kindness.

Special thanks to Mark Itoh, whose dedication ensured a memorable homestay.

We deeply appreciate how you treated our students like family. We look forward to hosting you at A.B. Paterson next year!

Please enjoy some highlights of the tour below.

Sue Walduck | Tour Coordinator & Director of Teacher Development & Effectiveness